In the Dehcho, here's what not to miss

In the Dehcho, here's what not to miss ...

Mountains that pierce the sky. Canyons that cleave the Earth. Waterfalls so powerful they'll leave you weak in the knees. And villages where time stands still – where your heart can catch up to your head. 

Virginia Falls

Nearly twice the height of Niagara, this rampaging waterfall is four acres in size, louder than a freight train and terrifying to behold. It’s the centrepiece of Nahanni National Park Reserve. You can experience it via a flightseeing trip from Fort Simpson or witness it while paddling the South Nahanni River. Just don’t miss the portage!

The Acho Dene Native Crafts store in Fort Liard

One of the finest galleries in all of the Northwest Territories, this sunny store is an essential stop for travellers on the Liard Highway. A wealth of moosehide and birchbark artworks and crafts are for sale, and the shopkeepers are brimming with handy information about the area.

 

The Cirque of the Unclimbables

No, you’re not dreaming. Back in the far country of Nahanni National Park Reserve, this unlikely set of peaks defies gravity, spiking toward the sky in a great cathedral of stone. The world’s top alpinists congregate here to scale the sheer faces, while hikers trek the trails of the idyllic “Fairy Meadow” below.

 

Sambaa Deh Falls

The Northwest Territories is full of waterfalls, but none is more accessible than this. The cascade gushes directly beneath the Highway 1 bridge, churning the currents of the Trout River into a furious froth. Walk the paths along the canyon rim, but beware – the rock is crumbly and the river is a long way down.

 

The Papal Flats in Fort Simpson

On the floodplain where the Liard River flows into the great Mackenzie, Pope John Paul II held mass for the Indigenous people of Canada nearly three decades ago. Thousands gathered as the world turned its eyes toward the Northwest Territories. Today the scenic site hosts community events, including the annual Open Sky Festival.